Monday, July 20, 2009

Health Care in America

The latest issue facing the citizens of the United States that is stoking the fires of my hypomania is health care.  The 2008 Election is past and the issue of gay rights continues, but on a less enthusiastic level for me.  So, keeping my mind racing are the stupid out-of-touch politicians, the health care industry that puts profits before people, and the main stream media that long ago forgot what journalism was all about.  Millionaire politicians haven't a clue about the day to day struggles of the middle class and the poor.  The health care industry complicates matters by paying off the politicians and lying to the public about everything to do with health care reform.  The talking heads on TV are simply lame and ignorant.  I'm trying my best to not slip from hypomania to depression though a trigger is just around the corner.  Some idiot in Michigan would like to "reform" the insurance coverage that public employee retirees currently have -- that is, make our health care costs go up while the State of Michigan "saves" money...... That's depressing.

No one seems to dispute that Americans pay more out of pocket for heath care.  No one disputes that the United States ranks below three dozen other countries in the delivery of health care.  So, why the heck is health care better in France, Canada, and the United Kingdom?  Why is it that health care costs in Mexico are cheaper than the U.S.?  Our experiences with buying prescription medications at a fraction of their U.S. costs should demonstrate that there is something rotten in D.C.  The rot begins with health care being a for-profit business and that not one politician is brave enough to call them out for taking huge profits while dumping needy folks from their rolls.  The Congress that passed the historic Medicare Prescription Coverage legislation were so beholding to their pharma and health insurance masters that the law prevented Medicare from negotiating for better drug prices.  And, that donut hole in coverage is a travesty.

Republicans talk big about competition -- free market -- and other such hypocritical nonsense.  Where is the competition amongst the pharmaceutical companies?  There is none.  And, unless there is competition between health insurers and a real honest-to-God public insurance plan we will never see sanity in health care costs.  The Republicans want to block any reform.  That is clearly evident by their failure to propose alternatives to the legislation being championed by Democrats.  Delay.  Delay.  And, kill reform is their mission.  Their reward will be more money for their re-election campaigns and a special place in hell.

Every day I read the horror stories of families saddled with enormous debt to pay for care that is needed or care that has been delivered.  No one should have to hold a bake sale, pancake breakfast, or spaghetti dinner to pay for life saving medical treatment.  When I think about the many many donation jars that I saw on store and restaurant counters in my hometown in Michigan I become saddened and then angry.  What is wrong with those people that believe in the philosophy of sink or swim?  If you don't have insurance, generous family and friends, or are unwilling to go deep into debt, than die.

The poor among us are the one's hit hardest by the economic troubles in the U.S. and the rest of the world.  If you don't have insurance you delay treatment that may end up being more costly in the end, that is, if you don't just die before your medical problem sends you to an emergency room.  If you don't have health insurance you no doubt lack dental care coverage.  So, the poor have more dental problems that eventually lead to more health problems.  And, no one seems to care.

I have to sing a familiar refrain here --- Where are the Christianists in the current health care debate?  They have so much money to throw at birther boobs, anti-abortion activists, and anti-civil rights retreads and they seem to have nothing to support the poor, the sick, and the homeless.  "Love Your Neighbor As Yourself" seems to only apply to their fellow Christiainist crazies and not to the world that Christ begged them to serve.  The Bible thumpers need to re-read Matthew 5.  Jesus Christ had a bit more to say about Christian conduct than the famous Beatitudes.

Matthew 5 verses 43 - 48:

"43"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor[h] and hate your enemy.' 44But I tell you: Love your enemies[i] and pray for those who persecute you, 45that
you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on
the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the
unrighteous. 46If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect."

Yep.  We are but a nation of mealy mouth hypocrites if we claim to love the Lord and we serve Him not......

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